Did you ever stop and think about the myriad outdoor activities in which holes are involved? There are bunches of them.
Think about your first pocketknife, for instance. You know. The one Grandpa gave you all those years ago. As a youth you cherished that treasured “blade” and carried it everywhere. It is a lifelong memory. You kept it all of two weeks.
Walking one morning, you donned a pair of old jeans with a hole in the pocket. Alas, it was the pocket in which you carried your “blade.” You never saw Grandpa’s knife again and that fact depresses you to this day.
It’s a fact of life that children’s pockets hold ten times the neat stuff contained in the pockets of grownups. Hence, young folks’ britches are much more likely to come apart at the seams and sprinkle valued treasures along life’s pathway. Since outdoorsmen never completely outgrow childhood, they carry this leaking-pocket syndrome to their graves.
Pocket holes are but one type of hole with which we must contend.
Will Rogers never met a man he didn’t like. I, in turn, have never owned a pair of waders that didn’t leak. Leaking waders present the wearer with two distinct disadvantages. (1) They can fill with water to the point where it is impossible to move. Thus, drowning becomes a very real issue. Also, the alligator on the far bank might awaken and mistake the stationary, rubber-legged object in the middle of the pond for a between-meals snack. (2) If the hole in one’s waders is large enough, various forms of aquatic animal life may enter. It’s uncanny how a pond snail, given enough time and a coward’s paranoia, can rapidly turn into a 30-foot anaconda.
Outdoorsmen are equally apt to wear holes in their socks. This brings about problems of a more domestic nature. For instance, the sportsman kicks off his shoes and props his feet on the coffee table. He’s never understood why this such a frowned-upon action when company is present. This particular evening, however, his exposed big toe sports a red, throbbing blister and an all-day overabundance of nail crud. The visiting minister and his spouse hurriedly excuse themselves.
“Uncouth goat!” exclaims our hero’s wife. “If you must remove your shoes, couldn’t you at least wear a pair of socks without holes?”
“I have no socks without holes,” the man explains. “And what in heck are you complaining about? They left early, didn’t they?”
The flying ashtray barely misses.
Yes, outdoor life is full of holes. They magically appear in tent roofs, hunting boots, truck tires, and in Mother Earth herself. Have you ever driven across a pasture pock-marked with bull-holes? You know, those crater-sized pits dug by boss cows and cleverly disguised with fringes of grass? Bull holes are easily identified. They’re full of mufflers, transmissions, and other automotive paraphernalia. Personally, I think they’re premeditated acts, measures of revenge exacted against the species that came up with the idea of bovine castration.
And how about stump holes? There is always at least one such hole directly between my campsite and the spot where I have chosen to answer nature’s call at two in the morning. Ah, how quickly a strategically located stump hole can change “have to go” into “already been.”
As I write all this, I of course realize there are many members of the non-outdoor fraternity who will look upon this “hole” thing as much ado about nothing. They will no doubt smirk and sarcastically refer to the hole they all believe is the root of all our problems. Namely, the hole they claim we have in our heads.
Well, I have my own anatomical description of folks with that attitude. They are all indisputable pains in the…neck!